Updated: Feb 16, 2021
I'm sure many of you have wondered what occurs in the day of a Veterinary physiotherapist, so I've written a blog post to tell you just that! This post will explain what I do each day, from visiting clients to writing vet letters to booking in clients.
Visiting clients is the main aspect of my job and the first thing I have to do before I see any of your horses is get a referral from your veterinarian. This is important, because without veterinary consent, I am not legally allowed to treat your animal. So, I will phone them up and talk to them about your animal's veterinary history and get a signed consent form allowing me to treat your pet.
Once I have gained veterinary consent I can come out to see your horse. Firstly, I will look at your animal standing still. I will evaluate how they stand, their conformation, and any differences in muscle tone and weight bearing. Next I perform a dynamic assessment. I will watch the animal walk and trot from from different perspectives and evaluate their gait. Before treating your animal, I have to palpate their muscles. I assess the symmetry through multiple bony landmarks and feel their muscles, looking for signs of pain, spasm and muscle tightness. Finally, I take your animals joints slowly through their full range of movement to assess for any joint abnormalities.
I will then treat your pet. I use a combination of manual techniques, electrotherapies, and remedial exercises.
After I have treated your animal, I have lots of administration work to do! I will do this with a cup of tea in the evenings after I have treated everyone's animals for the day.
Firstly, I write up all the notes I have taken from our session together. This will make the basis of a letter I will send to the vet explaining my findings and the treatment I gave your animal. It is important for me to keep in contact with your vet to ensure we are both up to date on the treatment your animal is getting.
Then, I will send a detailed letter to you explaining the remedial exercises I've specified for you to do, as well as my assessment of your animal and an invoice. These remedial exercises will come with detailed instructions and photographs explaining to you how to perform them.
Finally, I will organise my diary to ensure I have lots of space to book you in! I will work out the times taken to get to different yards and the time needed for each treatment and try to fit as many of my clients in as possible. And that is an average day in the life of a Veterinary Physiotherapist.